Agenda and draft minutes

Families Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 18th April, 2024 1.30 pm

Contact: Grace Anderson, Tel: 0191 433 4635, Email: 

No. Item


Minutes of last meeting pdf icon PDF 93 KB

The Committee is asked to approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 7 March 2024.


The minutes of the meeting held on 7 March 2024 were approved as an accurate record with no matters arsing.


Declarations of Interest

Committee members to declare an interest in any particular agenda item where applicable.


No interests were declared.


Health Service Support in Schools pdf icon PDF 1 MB

For children with chronic health conditions and/or childhood allergies

Presentation of Dawn Robson


The Committee received a presentation concerning the light tough support offered to schools regarding health issues.

The areas that were covered in the presentation are:

·         Support for schools with pupils that have chronic health conditions

·         Update on health promotion work around asthma, allergies, diabetes and epilepsy

·         Medication management in schools

To date, the data shows that:

·         Approximately 2,275 children and young people in Gateshead (0-24 years) have asthma

·         Approximately 225 children and young people in Gateshead (0-24 years) have epilepsy

·         126 Children and Young People in Gateshead with Diabetes (0-19 years) have diabetes

o   122 have Type 1 and 4 have Type 2 Diabetes

Other support outlined that was given to schools includes: Learning Disability Annual Health Checks; GP Kitemark work; Little Book of Useful Stuff; and, Signposting to additional Services who can support and offer Training.

The Committee discussed support for children around a child at risk, teacher training on dyslexia, increases in asthma in children, and transition for parents of children with SEND needs regarding changes to involvement in medical conversations post-16.


      i.        The Committee noted the presentation.


Early Years in Schools Readiness pdf icon PDF 77 KB

Report of Judith Reay, Early Years Service Manager

Additional documents:


A report was given to the Committee discussing current procedures of support in the Early Years Sector.

The presentation covered strengths, challenges and concerns, and next steps.

The majority of children starting school have accessed Early Years funded provision. (Maintained nursery school, nursery class in a school, private nursery, playgroup or childminder.) 98% of all provision is good, outstanding or MET by Ofsted.

The new entitlement for working parents of two-year-olds (from 1st April 2024) has 75% of codes validated compared to 57% nationally. This is an additional 614 children in Gateshead.

It was highlighted that financial incentives of £1000 have been made available in neighbouring Local Authorities but not in Gateshead.

Next steps include:

·         Implementing the Childcare Expansion.

o   Sept 24 – 15 hours for working families with under two’s

o   Sept 25 – 30 hours for working families with under two’s and two-year-olds

·         Addressing the recruitment issue in the childcare sector and working with the Family Learning Service, Post -16 and Learning and Skills to develop training pathways and to support networking.

·         Monitoring the supply and demand by ward, specifically the availability of places for the most vulnerable children.

The Committee considered changes in eligibility for child care support. There was a discussion of Gateshead’s exclusion from the financial incentives for childcare. This is currently being discussed with the Department of Education.


      i.        The Committee noted the report.


Work Programme 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Report of Emma Fagan, Scrutiny Officer, Democratic Services

Additional documents:


The Committee received a report detailing the Overview and Scrutiny work programme setting process for 2024-25 and a list of suggested topics for inclusion in the work programme, relevant to the remit of the Families Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC).

Elected Members and relevant officers were invited to submit suggestions for inclusion in the work programme between 20th February 2024 and 5th March 2024.

Ideas for topics for scrutiny to consider can be gathered from a wide range of sources including:

·         Elected Members

·         Senior Officers

·         Partner Organisations

·         Corporate Plans and Strategies

·         Complaints system and Ombudsman

·         Evidence from Councillors on issues affecting neighbourhoods

Appendix 1 detailed the suggestions put forward for the 2024/25 Work Programme.


It was noted that there is a directorate move within the Council of housing into public health, and that part of this remit will include the development of an anti-poverty strategy.



      i.        The Committee noted the report.

     ii.        The Committee noted that they would like to look closely at work relating to child poverty in the development of a new anti-poverty strategy.